Evoking the “Iceberg” Without Showing the Whole Thing

Steve Jobs once remarked that leadership was as much about “deciding what not to do, as deciding what to do.” He famously put these words into practice more than 25 years ago when he returned to Apple to save the company from bankruptcy.

To right the ship, Jobs charted a new course around the central idea of simplicity. Rather than make a dozen products that were merely adequate, Apple would focus on just four, and knock them out of the park. To that end, Jobs applied a Zen-like focus on ensuring that each product was beautiful and simple.

But simplicity, as he knew, was not just a matter of stripping away random components and buttons— it required a deep, almost philosophical understanding of the essence of a product, its purpose.

In the world of storytelling, this was akin to what Hemingway called the “Iceberg Theory.” In a word, the theory said that if a writer knew the shape of the ice underneath the water, he could evoke the iceberg without showing the whole thing. He could (with a few strokes of the pen) create a character or a moment with real meaning and gravitas – even though most of the ice, so to speak, was submerged.

In the same way, by understanding a product on a deep level, Jobs could distill it down to its essence and focus on what mattered; he could fashion something that was not only simple but sophisticated.

Apple summed all this up nicely in one of its first marketing brochures with the line: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

But the benefits did not stop there.

Once they understood something deeply, they could reinvent it by taking a new approach. They could reinvent the wheel, as it were. And the results, as we know, were exhilarating: a marriage of art and craftsmanship.

When people held an Apple device, they could sense the thought that had gone into every choice and the unifying principle at work— even if it was outwardly simple. (Much Like Hemingway’s straightforward prose suggested so much more because he understood the underlying details of his story, its purpose, and what made it tick.)

Jobs understood this too: which was why, after he returned to Apple, he managed to steer the company toward record profits. And the rest, as they say, is history.


The Prime Group Theory

On reflection, Prime Group was likewise founded on a strategy to focus on what to do – and that was to not be like anyone else in the market!

In the world of logistics, most anyone can get things from point A to B with a little luck and some muscle. But to do so in a consistently dependable, efficient, and professional manner – now that was to be our niche, our pathway to success. And it didn’t take brush with failure to get us here!

From day one, we decided to work only with the most professional and sophisticated air freight partners in the industry, like Atlas Air and Emirates Sky Cargo – and in doing so, grow our business by focusing on providing the highest possible level of customer service.

We’ve since branched into offering multiple modes of cargo transport and services all across the globe and it is a very challenging business that changes every day. But no matter what, I’d like to think that when people experience the quality of our “product,” not unlike Apple, they can truly sense the thought that has gone into every choice and the unifying principle at work – even if it is seemingly simple.

Trust us to do what we do best by providing you with the highest quality logistics services, so that you can do what you do best, run your business. It’s as simple as that.


Roger Paredes

Prime Group CEO